Mad Love Chase Vol. 1

MADLOVCHA01What’s on the back: Meet Kujou Yamato. Sure, on the outside, he appears to be your average teen, pursuing love and happiness in his school’s hallowed halls… The problem is on the inside: Kujou is really Kaito, the prince of the demon realm, who has escaped to the human world to avoid a marriage he wants no part of. Kaito’s dad, furious, sends a clumsy trio of demons to retrieve him, and a mad love chase ensues…And it’s going to take a lot of luck and cleverness to avoid being dragged back home.

Review: I have no idea why this manga is called Mad Love Chase. Majority of the people chasing Kujou are guys and they are definitely not in love with him. Regardless of the name, this manga was so silly that it was quite funny.

Prince Kaito along with his cat, Rebun, runs away from a marriage that he does not want, and escapes to the human world to find himself a lot smaller than his usual self. With this disguise no one can tell that he was the former prince of the demon world, unless, they strip him and reveal the tattoo on his back.

Kuyou, formerly Kaito, finds himself enjoying his new lifestyle, where he lives freely and can fall in love with any girl wants to. Funny thing is that his taste in woman is quite bad. He befriends one of the demons, Asakura, but he doesn’t realize that Kuyou is the prince he’s looking for. Along with Asakura, there are two other demons disguised as a janitor and a student on the lookout for the prince. Along with his fiance and her goons, this manga is packed with comedy.

I enjoyed this manga for it’s comedy aspect, but that’s about it. To me, there’s no real plot to this story. Sure, Prince Kaito is on the run from a potential marriage, but that’s about it. I don’t really see a development in the story. All the characters are just too silly, especially the Janitor, who’s really an old pervert. Regarding, Kujou’s fiance, I can see why he’s running away from her. Even the King of the demon world knew that he can’t upset that woman, unless he wants to be killed. I wouldn’t want to marry her as well.

The art reminds me of Yaoi, which is because the author has produced other Yaoi works. I like it, except for the fact that at times I find the drawings a little busy. I tend to prefer artwork that are clear and easy to understand.

Final Thoughts: This manga is passable, but, in the long run it has nothing to offer except it’s comedy. The summary in the back got my attention, but in this volume it doesn’t really deliver. Hopefully, in the next volume we see an improvement in terms of plot.

Overall Grade: C-

 

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Shinobi Life Vol. 1

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What’s on the back: Beni is a privileged girl, who could get anything she wants, except…she wants to die, to spite her father. But one day a mysterious man named Kagetora fell down from the sky. He turns out to be a ninja who has sworn his loyalty to Beni, as her bodyguard. Kagetora comes from the past, and spent his life protecting Beni-Hime who he would risk his life for. But Kagetora mistakens Beni as the princess from the past. Can true love and honor survive after centuries-long time warp – in a crazy modern world?

Review: Beni lives a life full of hatred for her estranged father due to the death of her mother when she was younger. She jumps at any chances that would endanger her life. For example, getting kidnapped, or living recklessly. Kagetora, a man who strangely dresses as a ninja, dropped down from the sky, and turns Beni’s life plans upside down (not that it’s a bad thing). Kagetora is in fact a ninja who has traveled to the future and believes that Beni is the Hime-Sama who he was sworn to protect. As time passes on, Beni falls for Kagetora, but she doesn’t have the heart to tell him that she’s not his princess.

I heard a lot of great things about this manga. But honestly, it’s only mediocre. It seems to fit into you’re perfect senario of a shoujo. Eg. Strong-will/depressed heroine rescued by a hero, who then changes her prospects on life. I’m not complaining about it though. I love myself some good shoujo. I only wanted something new and fresh. Nevertheless, Shinobi Life was still a very decent read.

What I like best about the story, was probably the problems the main characters have to deal with, such as social standings. Kagetora (even if he’s from the past) strongly believes that social standings is a rule that should be followed closely. Which leads to Beni’s problems. Beni, even though she’s not a real princess, is still a young wealthy heiress. She finds herself falling in love with Kagetora, but it’s impossible for Kagetora to fall in love with her because it goes against his upbringing.

The second half of the manga was probably the better half for me, since it deals with time traveling. Here we meet a plethora of new characters including the real princess, and also Kagetora’s arch enemy. We also see Kagetora and Beni kind of getting together. But the presence of Beni’s father probably means that the couple is probably going to go through more hardships before they are together officially.

I didn’t mention this before, but the way Kagetora sees and treats Beni is somewhat hilarious. We have to remember that Kagetora comes from the past, where modesty is very important. Beni is raised in the 21st century where bare shoulders, and bikini tops are normal. It’s cute when Kagetora begs Beni to wear more appropriate clothing.

I got to admit, even though the story is mediocre, the art is what caught my attention. I’m a sucker for pretty artwork, and Shinobi Life seems to have been drawn in a very visual pleasing way. I love the way Kagetora looks. Also, Beni’s character design wasn’t so bad as well. My only complaint is the publisher. Tokyopop, I love you but your paper quality sucks. I always get disappointed when a good manga gets crappy paper. It takes away from my enjoyment factor.

Final Thoughts: Even though this is just a typical shoujo, I found it to be a very fun read. I would love to see how Beni’s and Kagetora’s relationship develops and what kind of obstacle is Beni’s father trying to throw at them. I’m guessing that Beni has a fiance she doesn’t know about lol, the curse of a typical shoujo, you’ll always know what will happen next. I want to see more of the new characters, especially Kagetora’s arch enemy, Hitaki. Another time traveling chapter wouldn’t be so bad as well! =D

Overall Grade: C+

Kodocha vol. 1

kodocha1Warning!!!! Reading this blog will lead to some spoilers!!! So beware if you wish to continue

What’s on the back: Kodocha is a smash-hit comedy series from Japan about what happens when child star Sana Kurata tries to “fix” the problems of everyone around her. And there are a lot of problems to solve. Her classroom’s overrun by bullies, her teacher’s being blackmailed, and the girls live in terror, all because of the tyrannical rule of the demon child Akito Hayama. There’s going to be a Rumble in the Jungle Gym when these two strong personalities collide.

Review: Last May I went to a convention and found the whole set of Kodocha for less than 30 dollars….and quickly grab them. I must have struck gold because Kodocha has been long out of print. Kodocha is actually a really cute manga. I think it’s more targeted towards kids under the age of thirteen, regardless it’s actually quite a fun read.

Kodocha tells the story of a child star name Sana. Sana acts in a show called “Kodocha” which translate to Child’s Toy. The show is usually placed in a school setting. In real life, the school she goes to is a nightmare. Her classroom is terrorized by a group of bullies led by Hayama, which Sana nicknames a demon child. Sana tries very hard to keep things under control in her class, but she finds it hard to achieve since even their teacher is being blackmailed by the group of bullies. Eventually, Sana takes an embarassing photo of Hayama, and blackmails him into controlling the group of bullies.

Kodocha is actually filled with a lot of amusing characters. Right now my favourite is her Mother. Her Mother is actually quite a strange character. She works as a famous writer, but at the same time she wears a squirel in her head. She normally pops up in the story and offers comic relief. Sana’s manger Rei (which Sana calls her gigolo) is also another character that is linked to Sana. We don’t know much about him yet. But according to the Author’s blurbs, we will learn about him more, in the next volume.

For a manga that is written in the 90s, the art is pretty nice. Sometimes I have trouble adjusting to older mangas, but with Kodocha, I wasn’t uncomfortable at all. The humour is well written as well. I also enjoy reading the author’s blurbs, because the author is quite amusing.

Final Thoughts: Kodocha is definitely a shoujo classic. It offers a lot of comic relief, which I actually laugh out loud from. The characters are quirky but at the same time, really fun. I don’t know what direction this manga is going, but I will definitely keep reading.

Overall Grade: B+

 

Trinity Blood Vol. 6

51VF3Qn4yEL__SL500_AA240_Summary: Sister Esther and Abel finaly reconcile in the after math of Radu’s devestating attack. As Ion slowly recovers and copes with his best friend’s betrayal, the party finally reaches the capital of the Methuselah Empire…. only to discover that even within the glorious city, they are anything but safe!

Review: I come to enjoy this story quite a bit. At first I was a bit skeptical about this story, because it seems so out of my element because normally, I perfer to read things closer to the shoujo side of manga. lol. After  a lot of begging and nagging, I finally cave in and started reading it.

In this volume, we get to see Esther and Abel reconciling. In the last volume, Esther sees Abel in his Crusnik form, and got terrified. I actually perfer him in his crusnik form because he just seems so much cooler. lol. There was also a pretty epic scene involving a priest floating in the scene. lol. He was just floating there, pass out, until Abel, Ion and Esther saved him. lol. I had to lol at that part.

Is it me or is the majority of men in this story happen to be bishounen? As the story continues, I happen to become the fan of Ion, who is just too kawaii to talk about. lol When Ion confessed his love for Esther, I just had to giggle. lol.

Now to get back into track, this volume involves a big scandal. Ion was charged with the murder of his grandmother, which he didn’t commit. The Queen, who somehow knew about this, asked her aide, Lady Astharoshe to house the Abel and his crew. There seems to be some kind of organization that is set on destroying something. What that something is, I’m not quite sure yet. But we do know that Radu, Ion’s best friend/traitor was involved with this organization.

Conclusion: I have quite a few more volumes of this series, in my to read pile. So expect to see quite a few more reviews about Trinity Blood coming your way.

Overall Grade: B

Your & My Secret Vol. 2

 

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Summary:  When Akira Uehara, overlooked because he doesn’t open his mouth, and Nanako Momoi, looked over until she opens her mouth, switch bodies, they find their new selves surprisingly comfortable. Unfortunately, they’re not the only ones. Akira and Nanako’s pre-swap best friends are now drawn to them post-op. And they want to spend the night! Akira and Nanako will have to do more than just tango in this volume of You & My Secret!

Review: This was probably one the funniest and most random manga I have ever read in my life. Ai Morinaga is a talented mangaka, so I’m dying to see what her other series are like. I’ve realized that lately I have been enjoying quite a few gender-bender stories, such as Coffee Prince (Korean drama), Hana-Kimi (Japanese Drama, that I’ve just completed.) and now You’re & My Secret.

During a trip to Okinawa (that Senbongi has won), funny antics occurred. There was a scene where Momoi (who’s in Akira’s body) catches a glimpse at Senbongi’s private parts, and begs him to let her see it again. Momoi also warns Akira (who’s in Momoi’s body) to not do any funny business with Shiina, who happens to be Momoi’s girlfriend. She warns Akira, that if something happens with Shiina, she will do bad things to Senbongi, and that he will regret it. Stuff accidentally happened with Shiina, and Momoi happens to see it. Momoi (who’s in a guy’s body) ran towards Senbongi and started to force herself on him. It was noted that Senbongi’s virginity is still intact….lol.

Another major event is that Senbongi overhears Akira and Momoi’s conversation, and learns that they have switch bodies.

During this volume, it has become clear that Momoi prefers being a guy. But as time passes on, Akira feels like he needs to become a boy one again because he felt that he is suddenly having girly intuitions…which is kind of true, since he does make a better girl than Momoi will ever be. Lol

 

Conclusion: This volume, has made my morning. This is one of the few manga that I laugh out loud at. The scene where Momoi forces herself on Senbongi, cracked me up. The plot didn’t move, and Grandpa never showed up, but it was still one great volume. The Illustration of Grandpa at the end, was one of the funniest I ever saw.

Overall Grade: A